Last week, we talked to Julia Haw about the proposed closure of the Illinois Art Museums. What a troubling time. This week, we are going to take a little peek at the interview that we had in December.
Back in December, I asked her about her work philosophy. She explained: “A lot of people are looking for a simple solution and a quick fix, or how to get from A to B very quickly. But it’s really about working (a lot) and it’s about steadiness. It’s about longevity. And what I’m really interested in, in being an artist, is the idea of longevity. I don’t want to be a flash pan artist or someone that just created a really great body of work and then was forgotten for many years. I’m interested in creating good works that are timeless and that will last in a historical context. So that’s number one.
“I’m also extremely supportive of the community. I love having these conversations. I get a lot out of it. So, yeah, I’m into supporting community. Back in the day of This is not the Studio (run by Claire Molek, Erin Babbin and Nick Jirasek on Marshfield Ave), we saw that in action, right? It was just one of the coolest places in Chicago bringing together artists from all periods in their careers, working in all different media. There were conversations, dinners, fantastic provoking shows and so much fun. I think there are more spaces like that now - at that time, perhaps I just wasn’t as familiar with the artistic landscape, but the studio was really, really cool. It was kind of like what you’re doing, bridging all these different artistic modes of expression.”
I asked her more specifically about how Chicago has shaped her as artist. Julia told me: “A huge part of my work is activating conversation and bringing the public forum back. Artists in the 1920s and shit, they’d go to a bar in New York and brawl with each other and yell. Robert Rauschenberg was swinging a punch and it was just like: ‘Oh God, like that’s so spirited.’ I feel that energy in Chicago. Yeah, so I think that that’s definitely shaped at least the spirit of my work. It’s caused me not to be afraid, to really put something out there and just be like: ‘Fuck it, I’m going to do this whether you like it or not.’”
Julia Haw added an update about her exhibition at the IL State Museum in Lockport:
She told me: "Since the museum is still technically open (with no insurances to protect the works), there will be a one night only party and brand new painting reveal in response to Rauner's proposed budget cuts, July 30th, IL State Museum Lockport,6-10PM (music and drinks provided) LONG LIVE CULTURE!!"
So check out the event on July 30th!
Check out her work here: http://www.juliahaw.com/
And if you haven't already, please consider signing the petition to save the Illinois Art Museums: http://petitions.moveon.org/sign/governor-rauner-dont